Marian Mcpartland & friends

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COMPOSERS: Marian Mcpartland & friends
LABELS: Concord
ALBUM TITLE: 85 Candles Ð Live in New York
WORKS: 85 Candles – Live in New York
PERFORMER: Marain McPartland (piano), various musicians
There’s a classic photo, taken in 1958, of 57 great jazz musicians posing in front of a Harlem brownstone. British-born pianist Marian McPartland is right there in the centre, flanked by Mary Lou Williams and Oscar Pettiford. One of the few survivors from that golden era, she is still working. Most of the all-star cast featured on this 85th birthday album have locked chords with McPartland on her long running, widely syndicated, radio show. Phil Woods, Jim Hall and Clark Terry are among the veterans; Dave Douglas, and Roy Hargrove among the recently risen stars. The redoubtable McPartland sounds as fresh as ever, whether comping sensitively or peeling back the years with her elegantly sparkling solo ballad playing. A live recording from New York’s Birdland club, the banter adds to the music’s warm feeling. Garry Booth